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You are on page 1of 10

TROUBLESHOOTING GUIDE

Abnormal readings in an installed meter can sometimes signify improper

wiring. This appendix is provided as an aid in troubleshooting potential

wiring problems.

NOTE

SECTION I: USING THIS GUIDE The following sections contain Case tables showing a variety of symptoms

and probable causes. The symptoms listed are ideal, and some judgment

should be exercised when troubleshooting. For example, if the kW reading

is 25, but you know that it should be about 300 kW, go to a table where

kW = 0 is listed as one of the symptoms.

Section II: Common Problems for 3-Wire and 4-Wire Systems addresses

symptoms and possible causes that occur regardless of system type. Check

this section first. If the symptoms are more complicated, proceed to Section

III: 3-Wire System Troubleshooting or Section IV: 4-Wire System

Troubleshooting as is appropriate.

Because it is nearly impossible to address all combinations of multiple

wiring mistakes or other problems that can occur (e.g., blown PT fuses,

missing PT neutral ground connection, etc.), this guide generally addresses

only one wiring problem at a time.

Before trying to troubleshoot wiring problems, it is imperative that all

instantaneous readings be available for reference. Specifically those

readings should include the following:

line-to-line voltages

line-to-neutral voltages

phase currents

power factor

kW

kVAR

kVA

What is Normal? Most power systems have a lagging (inductive) power factor. The only time

a leading power factor is expected is if power factor correction capacitors

are switched in or over-excited synchronous motors with enough capacitive

kVARS on-line to overcorrect the power factor to leading. Some

uninterruptable power supplies (UPS) also produce a leading power factor.

"Normal" lagging power system readings are as follows:

kW =

kVAR =

The information in this appendix is intended to be general in nature

and covers a variety of metering devices.

The Power Meter 710 does not display signed readings for Power,

Engergy, or Power Factor. Throughout this appendix, when values

are stated in terms of positive, negative, or lagging, for the Power

Meter 710, those readings are absolute.

3 V

AB

I

3Avg

PF

3Avg

) 1000

kVA)

2

kW)

2

( ( ( )

1

kVA =

= lagging in the range 0.70 to 1.00 (for 4-wire systems, all

phase PFs are about the same)

Phase currents approximately equal

Phase voltages approximately equal

A quick check for proper readings consists of kW comparisons (calculated

using the equation above and compared to the meter reading) and a

reasonable lagging 3-phase average power factor reading. If these checks

are okay, there is little reason to continue to check for wiring problems.

SECTION II: COMMON PROBLEMS FOR

3-WIRE AND 4-WIRE SYSTEMS

3 V

AB

I

3Avg

) 1000

PF

3Avg

Table C 1: Section IICase A

Symptoms: 3-Wire and 4-Wire Possible Causes

Zero amps

Zero kW, kVAR, kVA

CT secondaries shorted

Less than 2% load on power meter based on CT ratio

Example: with 100/5 CT's, at least 2A must flow through CT window for power

meter to wake up

Table C 2: Section IICase B

Symptoms: 3-Wire and 4-Wire Possible Causes

Negative kW of expected magnitude

Positive kVAR

Normal lagging power factor

(See NOTE on page 37.)

All three CT polarities backwards; could be CTs are physically mounted

with primary polarity mark toward the load instead of toward source or

secondary leads swapped

All three PT polarities backwards; again, could be on primary or secondary

NOTE: Experience shows CTs are usually the problem.

Table C 3: Section IICase C

Symptoms: 3-Wire and 4-Wire Possible Causes

Frequency is an abnormal value; may or may not be a

multiple of 50/60 Hz.

PTs primary and/or secondary neutral common not grounded (values as

high as 275 Hz and as low as 10 Hz have been seen)

System grounding problem at the power distribution transformer (such as

utility transformer), though this is not likely

2

SECTION III: 3-WIRE SYSTEM

TROUBLESHOOTING

Table C 4: Section IIICase A

Symptoms: 3-Wire Possible Causes

Currents and voltages approximately balanced

kW = near 0

kVAR = near 0

PF can be any value, probably fluctuating

CT secondary leads are swapped (A-phase lead on C-phase terminal and

vice versa)

PT secondary leads are swapped (A-phase lead on C-phase terminal and

vice versa)

Table C 5: Section IIICase B

Symptoms: 3-Wire Possible Causes

Phase B current is higher than A and C (except in

System Type 31)

kVA = about half of the expected magnitude

kW and kVAR can be positive or negative, less than about

half of the expected magnitude

PF can be any value, probably a low leading value

One CT polarity is backwards

3

Table C 6: Section IIICase C

Symptoms: 3-Wire Possible Causes

is higher than and

kVA = about half of the expected magnitude

kW and kVAR can be positive or negative, less than about

half of the expected magnitude

PF can be any value, probably a low leading value

One PT polarity is backwards

V

CA

3 V

AB

V

BC

Table C 7: Section IIICase D

Symptoms: 3-Wire Possible Causes

kW = 0 or low, with magnitude less than kVAR

kVAR = positive or negative with magnitude of close to what

is expected for kW

kVA = expected magnitude

PF = near 0 up to about 0.7 lead

(See NOTE on page 37.)

Either the two voltage leads are swapped OR the two current leads are

swapped AND one instrument transformer has backwards polarity

(look for high or phase B current = high)

The power meter is metering a purely capacitive load (this is unusual); in

this case kW and kVAR will be positive and PF will be near 0 lead

V

CA

3 = 3

3

SECTION IV: 4-WIRE SYSTEM

TROUBLESHOOTING

Table C 8: Section IIICase E

Symptoms: 3-Wire Possible Causes

One phase current reads 0

kVA = about 1/2 of the expected value

kW, kVAR, and power factor can be positive or negative of

any value

(See NOTE on page 37.)

The CT on the phase that reads 0 is short-circuited

Less than 2% current (based on CT ratio) flowing through the CT on the

phase that reads 0

Table C 9: Section IVCase A

Symptoms: 4-Wire Possible Causes

kW = 1/3 of the expected value

kVAR = 1/3 of the expected value

power factor = 1/3 of the expected value

All else is normal

One CT polarity is backwards

NOTE: The only way this problem will usually be detected is by the Quick Check

procedure. It is very important to always calculate kW. In this case, it is the only symptom

and will go unnoticed unless the calculation is done or someone notices backwards CT on

a waveform capture.

Table C 10: Section IVCase B

Symptoms: 4-Wire Possible Causes

kW = 1/3 of the expected value

kVAR = 1/3 of the expected value

2 of the 3 line-to-line voltages are low

power factor = 1/3 of the expected value

All else is normal

One PT polarity is backwards

NOTE: The line-to-line voltage reading that does not reference the PT with backwards

polarity will be the only correct reading.

Example: , ,

In this case, the A-phase PT polarity is backwards. is correct because it does not

reference .

3

V

AB

277 = V

BC

480 = V

CA

277 =

V

BC

V

A

Table C 11: Section IVCase C

Symptoms: 4-Wire Possible Causes

One line-to-neutral voltage is zero

2 of the 3 line-to-line voltages are low

kW = 2/3 of the expected value

kVAR = 2/3 of the expected value

kVA = 2/3 of the expected value

Power factor may look abnormal

PT metering input missing (blown fuse, open phase disconnect, etc.) on the

phase that reads zero.

NOTE: The line-to-line voltage reading that does not reference the missing PT input will be

the only correct reading.

Example: , ,

In this case, the B-phase PT input is missing. is correct because it does not

reference .

3

V

AB

277 = V

BC

277 = V

CA

480 =

V

CA

V

B

4

Table C 12: Section IVCase D

Symptoms: 4-Wire Possible Causes

3-phase kW = 2/3 of the expected value

3-phase kVAR = 2/3 of the expected value

3-phase kVA = 2/3 of the expected value

One phase current reads 0

All else is normal

The CT on the phase that reads 0 is short-circuited

Less than 2% current (based on CT ratio) flowing through the CT on the

phase that reads 0

Table C 13: Section IVCase E

Symptoms: 4-Wire Possible Causes

kW = near 0

kVA = near 0

3-phase average power factor flip-flopping lead and lag

Voltages, currents, and kVA are normal

Two CT secondary leads are swapped (A-phase on B-phase terminal, for

example)

Two PT secondary leads are swapped (A-phase on B-phase terminal, for

example)

NOTE: In either case, the phase input that is not swapped will read normal lagging power

factor.

Table C 14: Section IVCase F

Symptoms: 4-Wire Possible Causes

kW = negative and less than kVAR

KVAR = negative and close to value expected for kW

kVA = expected value

Power factor low and leading

Voltages and currents are normal

All three PT lead connections rotated counterclockwise: A-phase wire on

C-phase terminal, B-phase wire on A-phase terminal, C-phase wire on B-

phase terminal.

All three CT lead connections rotated clockwise: A-phase wire on B-phase

terminal, B-phase wire on C-phase terminal, C-phase wire on A-phase

terminal.

Table C 15: Section IVCase G

Symptoms: 4-Wire Possible Causes

kW = negative and less than kVAR

kVAR = positive and close to the value for kW

NOTE: looks like kW and kVAR swapped places

kVA = expected value

Power factor low and lagging

Voltages and currents are normal

All three PT lead connections rotated clockwise: A-phase wire on B-phase

terminal, B-phase wire on C-phase terminal, C-phase wire on A-phase

terminal.

All three CT lead connections rotated counterclockwise: A-phase wire on

C-phase terminal, B-phase wire on A-phase terminal, C-phase wire on B-

phase terminal.

5

FIELD EXAMPLE Readings from a 4-wire system

Troubleshooting Diagnosis

Power factors cannot be correct

None of the Section II symptoms exist, so proceed to the 4-wire

troubleshooting (Section IV)

Cannot calculate kW because 3-phase power factor cannot be right, so

calculate kVA instead

Calculated kVA =

=

=

Power meter reading is essentially zero compared to this value

4-wire Case E looks similar

Since the PTs were connected to other power meters which were

reading correctly, suspect two CT leads swapped

Since A-phase power factor is the only one that has a normal looking

lagging value, suspect B and C-phase CT leads may be swapped*

After swapping B and C-phase CT leads, all readings went to the

expected values; problem solved

*See NOTE on page 37.

kW 25 =

kVAR 15 =

kVA 27 =

I

A

904A =

I

B

910A =

I

C

931A =

I

3Avg

908A =

V

AB

495V =

V

BC

491V =

V

CA

491V =

V

AN

287V =

V

BN

287V =

V

CN

284V =

PF

3Avg

0.75 = 0.22

3 V

ab

I

3Avg

) 1000 (

1.732 495 908) 1000

778 kVA

6

GLOSSARY

TERMS

absolute energyboth energy in and out of the load are treated as

additive.

absolute powerboth power in and out of the load are treated as

additive.

accumulated energyenergy can accumulates in either signed or

unsigned (absolute) mode. In signed mode, the direction of power flow is

considered and the accumulated energy magnitude may increase and

decrease. In absolute mode, energy accumulates as a positive regardless

of the power flow direction.

active alarman alarm that has been set up to trigger the execution of a

task or notification when certain conditions are met. An icon in the upper-

right corner of the meter indicates that an alarm is active (!). See also

enabled alarm and disabled alarm.

baud ratespecifies how fast data is transmitted across a network port.

block interval demandpower demand calculation method for a block of

time and includes three ways to apply calculating to that block of time

using the sliding block, fixed block, or rolling block method.

communications linka chain of devices connected by a

communications cable to a communications port.

current transformer (CT)current transformer for current inputs.

demandaverage value of a quantity, such as power, over a specified

interval of time.

device addressdefines where the power meter resides in the power

monitoring system.

eventthe occurrence of an alarm condition, such as Undervoltage

Phase A, configured in the power meter.

firmwareoperating system within the power meter

fixed blockan interval selected from 1 to 60 minutes (in 1-minute

increments). The power meter calculates and updates the demand at the

end of each interval.

floata 32-bit floating point value returned by a register. The upper 16-

bits are in the lowest-numbered register pair. For example, in the register

4010/11, 4010 contains the upper 16-bits while 4011 contains the lower

16-bits.

frequencynumber of cycles in one second.

line-to-line voltagesmeasurement of the rms line-to-line voltages of the

circuit.

line-to-neutral voltagesmeasurement of the rms line-to-neutral

voltages of the circuit.

maximum demand currenthighest demand current measured in

amperes since the last reset of demand.

maximum demand real powerhighest demand real power measured

since the last reset of demand.

maximum demand voltagehighest demand voltage measured since

the last reset of demand.

maximum demandhighest demand measured since the last reset of

demand.

7

maximum valuehighest value recorded of the instantaneous quantity

such as Phase A Current, Phase A Voltage, etc., since the last reset of the

minimums and maximums.

minimum valuelowest value recorded of the instantaneous quantity

such as Phase A Current, Phase A Voltage, etc., since the last reset of the

minimums and maximums.

nominaltypical or average.

parityrefers to binary numbers sent over the communications link. An

extra bit is added so that the number of ones in the binary number is either

even or odd, depending on your configuration). Used to detect errors in

the transmission of data.

phase currents (rms)measurement in amperes of the rms current for

each of the three phases of the circuit. See also maximum value.

phase rotationrefers to the order in which the instantaneous values of

the voltages or currents of the system reach their maximum positive

values. Two phase rotations are possible: A-B-C or A-C-B.

potential transformer (PT)also known as a voltage transformer.

power factor (PF)true power factor is the ratio of real power to apparent

power using the complete harmonic content of real and apparent power.

Calculated by dividing watts by volt amperes. Power factor is the

difference between the total power your utility delivers and the portion of

total power that does useful work. Power factor is the degree to which

voltage and current to a load are out of phase.

real powercalculation of the real power (3-phase total and per-phase

real power calculated) to obtain kilowatts.

rmsroot mean square. Power meters are true rms sensing devices.

rolling blocka selected interval and subinterval that the power meter

uses for demand calculation. The subinterval must divide evenly into the

interval to the second. Demand is updated at each subinterval, and the

power meter displays the demand value for the last completed interval.

scale factormultipliers that the power meter uses to make values fit into

the register where information is stored.

safety extra low voltage (SELV) circuita SELV circuit is expected to

always be below a hazardous voltage level.

short integera signed 16-bit integer.

sliding blockan interval selected from 1 to 60 minutes (in 1-minute

increments). If the interval is between 1 and 15 minutes, the demand

calculation updates every 15 seconds. If the interval is between 16 and 60

minutes, the demand calculation updates every 60 seconds. The power

meter displays the demand value for the last completed interval.

system typea unique code assigned to each type of system wiring

configuration of the power meter.

thermal demanddemand calculation based on thermal response.

Total Harmonic Distortion (THD or thd)indicates the degree to which

the voltage or current signal is distorted in a circuit.

total power factorsee power factor.

true power factorsee power factor.

unsigned integeran unsigned 16-bit integer.

unsigned long integeran unsigned 32-bit value returned by a register.

The upper 16-bits are in the lowest-numbered register pair. For example,

in the register pair 4010 and 4011, 4010 contains the upper 16-bits while

4011 contains the lower 16-bits.

8

ABBREVIATIONS AAmpere

ADDRPower meter address

AMPSAmperes

BARGRBargraph

COMMSCommunications

CPTControl Power Transformer

CTsee current transformer on page 43

DMDDemand

DOMDate of Manufacturing

FFrequency

HZHertz

ICurrent

IMAXCurrent maximum demand

kVAKilovolt-Ampere

kVADKilovolt-Ampere demand

kVARKilovolt-Ampere reactive

kVARDKilovolt-Ampere reactive demand

kVARHKilovolt-Ampere reactive hour

kWKilowatt

kWDKilowatt demand

kWHKilowatthours

kWH/PKilowatthours per pulse

kWMAXKilowatt maximum demand

MAINTMaintenance screen

MBUSMODBUS

MINMinimum

MINMXMinimum and maximum values

MSECMilliseconds

MVAhMegavolt ampere hour

MVARhMegavolt ampere reactive hour

MWhMegawatt hour

O.S.Operating System (firmware version)

PReal power

PARParity

PASSWPassword

PdReal power demand

PFPower factor

PhReal energy

PMPower meter

PQSReal, reactive, apparent power

PQSdReal, reactive, apparent power demand

PRIMPrimary

PTNumber of voltage connections (see potential transformer on page 44)

9

PWRPower

QReactive power

QdReactive power demand

QhReactive energy

R.S.Firmware reset system version

SApparent power

S.N.Power meter serial number

SCALEsee scale factor on page 44

SdApparent power demand

SECONSecondary

SECSecondary

ShApparent Energy

SUB-ISubinterval

THDTotal Harmonic Distortion

UVoltage line to line

VVoltage

VARvolt ampere reactive.

VMAXMaximum voltage

VMINMinimum voltage

10

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